While tending to your garden or mowing your lawn, you're likely to come across weeds. Unfortunately, no matter how many times you dig them out, they'll always find a way to grow back. That's why having the best weed and grass killer can come in handy.
While searching for weed killers, there are a couple of things to consider. Although they may help control your weeds, you also need to ensure that they are safe for both you and your family/ housemates.
So, how do you go about settling on the right one? We've outlined 5 of the best weed killers in the market and features to consider when shopping for them.
Best Weed Killers
1. Roundup Ready-To-Use Weed & Grass Killer III
- Kills existing weeds and grass to the root. Guaranteed! Consumer...
- Protective Shield fits over weeds to contain spray and help...
- Use in and around vegetable gardens, flower beds, tree rings and...
- Visible results in 3 hours
- Rainproof in 10 minutes
With this weed and grass killer, you can be sure your flower beds, gardens, walkways will remain weed-free.
No diluting is needed as the weed killer comes ready to use in a convenient easy to use Pump 'N Go container. In addition, it features an extendable wand that allows you to target pesky weeds without harming the nearby plants.
The Roundup Weed and Grass Killer can be used on mulched beds, around tree rings, cracks in driveways and patios. The formula is designed to kill tough weeds and grass down to the root.
The Roundup Weed and Grass Killer formula is " rainproof " 10 minutes after application, and visible results are guaranteed in around three hours.
Its the right weed killer for Annual Bluegrass, Bermuda Grass, Bindweed, and Other Listed Weeds
2. Green Gobbler Vinegar Weed & Grass Killer
- KILLS WEEDS & GRASS FAST - Eliminate any type of weed in just a...
- SAFE TO USE ANYWHERE - Perfect for residential, commercial,...
- CERTIFIED FOR ORGANIC USE - Completely eliminates and desiccates...
- POWERFUL FORMULA - NO potentially cancer-causing chemicals....
- 30-DAY MONEY BACK GUARANTEE - If you are not pleased, call or...
The weed and grass killer effectively controls crabgrass, dandelion, clover weeds, and other grassy weeds, using a potent, pet-safe vinegar formula. It's the best weed and grass killer for residential, commercial, industrial, and commercial purposes.
The weed and grass killer can be used in driveways, sidewalks, concrete, mulch beds, pavers, flower beds, parking lots, farmlands, barns, etc. When applying, fill a pump sprayer with the organic herbicide or attach the supplied trigger sprayer, then point and spray; The chemical kills weeds within 24 hours and deteriorates in the soil within days.
This grassy weed preventer is a great choice if searching for a toxic-free weed killer. It's glyphosate-free, and its main ingredients are ethanol, which is distilled from corn grain, and vinegar. However, it will still take care of unwanted plants and stubborn weeds.
Something worth noting is that you should avoid spraying the Green Gobbler on healthy grass as it's harmful to beneficial plants.
The weed killer can be used straight out of the bottle, and the natural acid will start drying out weeds on contact.
3. Spectracide Weed and Grass Killer Concentrate
- Kills weeds and grasses: Use on driveways and walkways, and...
- Kills the root: Visible results as fast as 3 hours – replant...
- Rain-fast: Rainfall or watering 15 minutes after application will...
- Concentrate: Mix and apply with a tank sprayer – Spray to...
- Money-back: Results or your money back – see product label for...
If searching for the best weed and grass killer that can help you kill weeds on a sidewalk, flower beds, or around your lawn, then this is an ideal choice.
The Spectracide weed killer controls both weeds and grass. As a result, the weed killer can be used on driveways, walkways, around fences, and even around trees and shrubs. You're assured of seeing visible results as soon as three hours after application, plus the formula is also " rainproof" in just 15 minutes, so you don't have to worry about it washing away.
The weed and grass killer should be mixed and applied with a tank sprayer to achieve the best results. The formula should be sprayed to cover the leaves of the target vegetation completely.
The weed and grass killer concentrate is available in 32- and 64-ounce containers, as well as 1-gallon jugs, and because it’s a concentrate, the jar is sure to go a long way, allowing you to treat more of your lawn.
The formula is best for killing broadleaf weeds, poison ivy, clover, and other listed weeds.
4. Preen Garden Weed Preventer
- Stop weeds before they start for up to 3 months guaranteed
- Safe for use around over 200 established flowers, vegetables,...
- Can be sold as a refill for flip-top applicator bottle
- Apply anytime in spring, summer or fall
- Not for use on lawns
The weed preventer is designed to prevent weeds by creating a barrier beneath the surface that stops the target weeds from growing.
The formula can be used around 200 established flowers, vegetables, trees, and shrubs. It works best when applied in spring after spreading mulch on your flower and shrub beds before new weeds start growing. However, if you forget to apply in early spring, the weed preventer can be applied anytime weeds grow.
Preen Garden Weed Preventer hinders common broadleaf weeds like chickweed, knotweed, purslane, and thistle, as well as grassy weeds like crabgrass, foxtail, and bluegrass for up to 3 months.
5. Flame King Weed Burner
- Flame control valve to easily control flame size
- Ideal for weed control, ice melting and other outdoor uses
- Molded handle for easy grip and comfort
- Integrated self-lighting ignition for quick flame
- Arrives fully assembled
This weed and grass killer is ideal for spot treatment and those who don't want to deal with chemicals.
The propane-powered torch can be used to control tough weeds as its 500,000 BTU heat output will quickly kill even the toughest weeds.
The weed burner attaches to standard liquid propane cylinders, including various sizes between 5 and 100 pounds. It has a 10-foot hose allowing you to walk around without moving the fuel tank, and the easy-grip handle makes it comfortable to operate.
Additionally, the torch is pretty versatile in that it can be used to melt snow or start barbecue or firepit fires, making it a useful tool to have around the house.
Features To Consider When Choosing Best Weed And Grass Killer
a) Stage of Weed Growth
This process is referred to as emergence, and it's the stage at which you must apply the weed killer. There are two stages to consider when searching for the best weed killers:
- Pre-emergent weed killers: These are sometimes labeled as " weed preventers." They target and kill the germinating seedlings of weeds before they emerge from the soils as weeds. Generally, you can apply them to the soil of lawns or gardens before seeing the signs of weeds. These weed killers form a chemical barrier in the top layer of soil that stops the growth of seedlings underground, thus killing the weeds.
- Post-emergent weed killers: They are also known as herbicides and are used to control existing weeds that have already emerged from the soil. This type of weed killer can be applied to the leaves and/or stems of visible weeds in garden beds or driveway or sidewalk cracks; the chemicals will kill the weeds either by destroying the foliage or stems or traveling down to the roots and killing the whole root system.
This refers to the ability of a weed and grass killer to destroy weeds but leave surrounding plants unharmed.
- Selective weed killers: They destroy weeds but not turfgrass or other useful plants in the vicinity. Hence they are ideal for getting rid of, for instance, dandelions or thistles on the lawn or in a flower bed.
- Non-selective weed killers: These weed killers do away with weeds and any other plants in the application area. They can be used along the fence or pool or in a driveway or sidewalk cracks, where you won’t put essential plants at risk.
When searching for the best weed and grass killer, it's key to consider the translocation process. This refers to the movement of the product within a weed once it's taken up through the leaves, stems, or roots of the plant.
- Contact weed killers: This type of weed and grass killer doesn't move within a weed after entering it. Instead, they kill the weed by destroying the plant part to which you applied the killer, usually within hours to days of application. These are the best weed killers to use on annual weeds such as crabgrass, nettle, and chickweed, which are easier to kill than perennial plants and generally die when the foliage or stems are destroyed.
- Systemic weed killers: This weed and grass killer is absorbed into the weed and moves within the weed. It usually travels down to the roots, destroying the whole plant from the bottom up. Generally, you can expect results to take several days to weeks. Unfortunately, unlike contact weed killers, systemic weed killers usually won’t state the specific period of time it takes to kill weeds. These are the best weed killers for perennial weeds, such as dandelion, poison ivy, or ragweed, which are typically more difficult to kill because of their deeper roots.
Persistence measures how long after application a weed killer remains in the soil and provides weed control before reapplication.
Generally, you'll come across two types when shopping for the best weed killer.
Long-lasting weed killers remain in the soil and hinder new weeds from growing in the application for months or even a year. Therefore, they are an ideal choice for lawns or gardens where you need lasting weed control and prevent the germination of new plants you grow in the area for a longer period of time. However, it's advisable not to use this type of weed and grass killer in areas that you plan to grow new crops/plants soon.
Temporary weed killers deteriorate in the soil within a few days to weeks, forcing you to reapply the product often to keep the weeds at bay. This, however, allows you to quickly replant other plants in the area without interrupting their growth. These are the best weed killers for gardens where you plant flowers or vegetables soon or places where your weeds rarely grow, like gaps between paver stones in the yard.
e) Read The Safety Labels
Safety should always be a priority when handling weed killers. Hence shopping for the best weed and grass killer, it's important to pay attention to the safety labels, regardless of whether the product has chemicals in it or not.
Not all weed killers are made safe to use in the presence of pets and children; hence one should be aware of this before buying and applying the chemical. The labels will also guide you on how long to wait before it's completely safe to be in the vicinity again.
There's also the aspect of safety equipment in the form of protective gear that one should have when handling the chemicals. When shopping for the best weed killers, it is essential to remember to be safe and not exposed to dangerous chemicals that can cause serious health complications. Consider the best weed killer that comes with gear like nozzles and backpacks, and everything else that can help you spray the chemicals with minimal exposure.
Something worth noting is that though a product may be labeled " all-natural" or “organic,” it does not necessarily mean it’s safe in contact or around kids and pets.
Frequently Asked Questions About Best Weed And Grass Killer (FAQs)
a) How Does A Weed Killer Work?
There are three types of weed killers. Pre-emergent and non-selective.
Pre-emergent herbicides generally work on newly germinated weed seeds underground to stop the root system's normal development or prevent the plant from sending up new shoots.
Post Emergent Herbicides, affect foliage thus preventing photosynthesis. In addition, they are absorbed into the plant's root system, resulting in the termination of the weed.
Non-Selective Herbicides kill all plants they come into contact with. Roundup, a glyphosate-based herbicide, is a widely available type of non-selective weed killer.
Selective Herbicides only affect the growth of target species. Its commonly used for broadleaf weed control.
b) Are Natural Weed Killers Effective?
There's the option of opting for organic weed killers. The formulas range from homemade solutions of distilled vinegar to ready-made formulas with clove oil, citric acid, and other natural, active ingredients. Whether you use a homemade weed killer or purchase a natural weed killer, the key thing to note is these products are non-selective. This means that they will kill all plants within the application area.
c) Can You Use Weed Killer If You Have Pets?
Safety is a key concern if you have pets that frequently come into contact with your lawn. Many weed killers have long-lasting residual effects on the area they are applied to. Hence, pet owners should take caution when applying these products where their pets are likely to walk or play around as they could ingest the chemicals directly or by licking their paws and fur that have come into contact with the weed and grass killer.
Organic weed killer may be a better choice for pet owners since the compounds within it tend to break down faster and are absorbed by the ground. However, it’s still crucial to read the directions for use and consider the warning label on any products you use since the potential effects can vary based on the active ingredients of each formula.